Healthfirst wellness plan for Claremont Village

Rosetta Jones receives a diabetes test at the kick-off to the Healthy Village Initiative on Saturday, October 23.
Photo by James Williams

A new wellness initiative promises to bring health education directly to residents of NYC Housing Authority buildings in Claremont Village.

Healthfirst has kicked-off a new three year program in collaboration with NYCHA and Bronx Lebanon Hospital to provide residents with on-site integrated health care systems in the complexes.

The new initiative will service Butler Houses, Gouverneur Morris I and II houses, Morrisania Houses, Daniel Webster Houses, and the Claremont Parkway and Franklin Avenue area over the next three years.

A kickoff breakfast was held Oct. 20 at the William Hobson Senior Center that included free health screenings.

“The Healthfirst Healthy Village Initiative gets people to take charge of their health by bringing the system to them with the efficiency and convenience of having a support system available at the foot of their door,” said George Hulse, Healthfirst vice-president.

The Healthy Village Initiative focuses on four key ingredients to better health: medical wellness, physical wellness, nutritional wellness, and weight loss, said officials, with plans developed for residents to lose weight over a 24- to 36-month period.

“Integrating the healthcare delivery system that is high-quality, patient-centered, and offers healthy lifestyle options are the backbone for the creation of the Healthfirst Healthy Village Initiative,” said Dr. Susan Beane, Healthfirst vice-president and medical director.

Grace Hunter, who has lived in the Webster Houses for the past 22 years and has been tenant association president for 11 years, will be one of the program supporters drawing neighbors’ attention to it.

She is especially delighted to see that community children will be learning healthy lifestyles together with their parents.

“We have a diverse community, and I always advocate for children first,” said Hunter, also secretary of the Claremont Community Center. “Children will engange with their parents in preparing healthy meals and making nutritious snacks. There is so many different things that they will be able to do together.”

Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at or by phone at (718) 742-3393

Olga Ochoa has her blood pressure checked during the launch.
Photo by James Williams

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